Eschatalogical Tension

I found out two weeks ago that my brother, who is an Air Force fighter pilot, will be heading to Bagdad for the next year. He is a Christian and Seminary student, and this places him in an odd situation. Yet he knows that God has placed him where he is, and delights in His plan.

I believe that God is even leading him in this next move, as he will not be bombing….not even flying. Instead, he will be advising Iraqi pilots. He will be living with them, teaching them, learning from them…..

I am afraid for his safety, yet at the same time I am rejoicing that he has the opportunity to support and love our Iraqi brothers in whatever capacity he can.

Yet I feel torn . . . I am torn between this world, its long felt hatreds and continuing wars, and the hope of the Kingdom which is to come. I support my brother. I support our country. Yet I also love our brothers and sisters in the Middle East. Not only those who have come to know the love of Christ, but also those who have yet to experience the rebirth that comes through faith in the power of the Cross.

We are not experiencing Kingdom living now. Our churches have missed the boat. Christians are as guilty of missing the message of Christ as the Jews of 1st century Palestine were of missing the message of Torah. My heart weeps with the realization, and yet I am here. Now. I must live in this world, but I am called to live apart from this world.

And so, as I support my brother and our military in the Middle East, I will also pray for the so called “enemies of the West”. For they are all Children of God. And many may yet become our brothers and sisters in Christ.

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